TeachersFirst's Oil Spill Resources
This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help teachers and students learn about oil spills and the short and long term impact on the environment caused by these environmental disasters. As students read and see images of animals, be aware that younger students may have more questions than they can explain. Use these resources together with your class to help them find ways they can contribute to a greater good after such a devastating event spreads across the news. View our full listing of resources tagged oil and oil spills.
Extend the opportunity to teach about persuasive writing (letters to legislators or the editor), careers in environmental science, and more.
Grades6 to 12
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In the ClassroomUse an interactive whiteboard or projector to show the disaster placed over where students live. Discuss the areas that would be affected, noting waterways, major buildings or attractions, and how the area would be affected by such a disaster. Have a discussion about short term and long term effects on the environment, jobs, and people's lives. Provide time for students to choose locations in the world to place the disasters. Search the various areas for jobs, agriculture, attractions, and native animals/plants that are affected. Identify how all disasters are devastating no matter where they are, including research on other problems that occur after the disaster. Write a letter to the editor expressing viewpoints of a disaster. Learn about how to best prepare and handle a disaster. Identify the different cultures in areas of the US and elsewhere and how relief needs can be different.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomTry using this site when discussing how science relates to our current world. For instance, show the ten most dangerous moments for the space shuttle and the station history when studying astronomy. Incorporate the slide show about the Gulf oil spill and reading into a class blog for a biology unit on bacteria. This slide show demonstrates how microbes are used to clean up the oil. The pictures of the organisms are wonderful! Or, incorporate it into an environmental science class dealing with the impact of human behavior on the environment. Have students read and view the slide show as homework, and then discuss what they have learned via your class wiki or in class. Challenge students to create online posters on paper or do it together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard (reviewed here) or PicLits (reviewed here). Have students further discuss the potential problems with associated new microbes into the oil spill area.
Grades6 to 12
In the ClassroomUse the site in conjunction with lessons on the US Gulf coast, or as an example of how we negotiate the government's role and responsibility in helping after a large-scale disaster. The menu includes access to pictures and comments from the general public. You will want to preview this area before sharing it in class. Have cooperative learning groups investigate specific areas of this site and create videos to share with the class using a site such as SchoolTube (reviewed here).
Very good resource for more than just one discipline. I used it in my Global Studies class. I loved it.Kevin, MS, Grades: 6 - 12